Richmond host Blackheath in the longest running annual fixture in rugby at the Athletic Ground on Saturday and there is plenty more than simply 151 years of history riding on it.

Director of rugby Steve Hill's men edged a 22-21 at Darlington Mowden Park at the weekend thanks to a 74th minute try from Charlie Lenygon and a touchline conversion from debutant Rory Lynn.

Richmond, who first played Blackheath in 1864, have won their past four matches and are currently fourth in the National Division One table - a point behind leaders Esher and level with this week's visitors, who are second.

Blackheath have won their past eight games, but were 36-27 losers the last time the two teams met at the Athletic Ground in 2014.

Only four points separate the division's top six teams, making this the most wide open title race the league has seen in recent seasons.

Darlington put 40 points on Richmond the last time they were in the north east and Hill admits his men had come a long way in a relatively short space of time.

"What a difference a year makes. Away at Darlington last season we were stuffed by forty points," he said.

"This time, against a squad containing fifteen full time players, we showed tremendous belief and resilience and scored four well taken tries.

"Consistency in selection has helped us thus far but a huge amount is owed to this week’s additions.

"Prop Ali Lyon changed our scrum fortune when he came on just before half time. Hooker Ross Grimstone, having not played since September 5 showed huge physical and mental toughness to play a full eighty minutes.

"Finally Rory Lynn comes off the bench and with his first goal kick for the first team nailed a touchline conversion to win the game.

"It was almost the definition of ‘winning ugly’, but the key word is ‘winning’."

Skipper Will Warden will win his 100th cap for Richmond on Saturday.